Rules as a Form of Communication

I received some comments on my WordPress posting of submission Day 9 and in the exchange I realized that I said something that was a new thought to me.  It’s not really a ground-breaking epiphany or anything but I wanted to put it out there as I haven’t really seen it portrayed this way either.

So much is made in D/s (and BDSM as a whole) about communication between both parties.  Talk.  Share your feelings.  Find mutual understandings.  Make sure everyone is happy.  This is definitely important and knowing that communication is possible is one of the cornerstones of trust in this lifestyle.

However, I’ve always felt the deeper that you go into D/s, the more the scales tip in her favor, the greater the disparity in status between Domme and sub, the less that the “traditional” forms of communication occur.  While the Domme may grill the sub, putting him under the spotlight and force him to spill his deepest thoughts and the secrets from his heart, the dynamics do not call for this to go both ways.

The leader does not have to explain herself to her subordinates.  The leader has the vision and the master plan.  The subordinates fill their roles, making that plan come to fruition.  This is so similar in that there are times when a sub’s specialized talents and abilities will be put to use and they may appear to be “in control” of this aspect.  It is probably wise to let a submissive investment banker handle the monetary investments.  This does not make him in control, it merely puts his talents to use in the best way possible.

The Domme is the one with the vision of the life.  She holds the master plan.  Once a comfort level has been reached and he has been trained, there is a lesser need for her to share with him what is going on in her mind.  In fact, it better preserves the dynamics if he doesn’t understand some of what she sees in her vision.  The sub has already agreed to trust her with his care.

As dynamics grow stricter, it also seems natural for the Domme to become more secretive, mysterious, and less revealing with her intentions.

I’m guessing right now there are at least a few people wanting to blow a whistle and shout “STOP!  You’re saying there should be less communication?  Lay off the crack pipe, dude.”

I do have a response to this.  I do not believe that communication should stop, I merely believe that many of the ways a Domme communicates to the sub will change as the relationship evolves.  When it comes to major, life-altering changes, yes, there probably should be a serious discussion with an honest back and forth dialogue between both parties.  These are generally few and far between.

When it comes to lesser-decisions, this is one of the ways that the communication form changes the most.  As a Domme becomes more dominant, she almost inevitably adds more rules to the relationship.  After giving it some thought, I tend to believe that rules are one the most complete forms of communication possible in a D/s relationship.  Although indirect, rules say so much as they state an expectation, give it importance, and imply a consequence.

I know early on in D/s relationships it is common to negotiate and talk about rules, the reasons behind them, punishments, and the like.  This also seems to get less common the deeper you get.  After say, 5 or 10 years it isn’t uncommon for a rule to be added and not talked about because he has no say in it so his opinion on it doesn’t really matter and she doesn’t feel the need to justify herself for adding it.

I still think that is communication… it’s just done in a different way.

For those who might disagree, I’m guessing that at some point you have been in a situation where you failed to meet an unspoken expectation and been passive-aggressively punished for it.  When you compare the two, communicating through rules seems clear as day.

Also, if anyone wants to go, “dude, we already knew this like, forever ago,” feel free to berate me in comments as I was late to the party and this is a new way for me to think about an old topic.

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4 thoughts on “Rules as a Form of Communication

  1. Interesting topic. I didn’t think of it as commutation either, until you mentioned it.

    I also believe as time goes on in a healthy relationship, there’s less of a need to communicate the same way that is needed in the beginning.

    Hmmmm, so if rules are a form of communication, that means we could call…oh, let’s say…a cane, or better yet, an anal hook a communication tool, right?

    And here I was thinking I was mean for wanting to use such things, when all along I just want to communicate.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. You are a hoot, Ms Dixie.

      I agree as time passes in many relationships the form and reasons for communication tend to evolve.

      I got a good chuckle out of the cane and hook. Without context their message is unclear. I tend to think of them more as a consequence than a form of communication and in that context, I suppose they do communicate.

      Take care.

      Liked by 1 person

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